Train­ing and re­tain­ing in­ter­na­tion­al pro­fes­sion­als: New Pader­born Uni­ver­sity pro­ject re­ceives mil­lions in fund­ing from BMBF and DAAD

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The qualification and sustainable integration of international skilled workers is one of the key levers of the German economy. One of the basic requirements is a sound education with subsequent prospects of permanent employment. Paderborn University has launched the "InRegioFit" project to pave the way for international students in the best possible way. The project focuses on a holistic approach based on the so-called "Student Life Cycle" in order to improve students' prospects and promote their integration into the regional labour market. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) are supporting "InRegioFit" from April for a period of five years with around 1.2 million euros. The project is part of the "Campus Initiative for International Experts", for which a total of around 120 million euros will be made available from BMBF funds until 2028.

Came to stay? Probably not.

"The shortage of skilled labour is becoming increasingly acute. Many companies are lacking qualified employees," says Stefan Schwan, Head of the International Office at Paderborn University and the driving force behind InRegioFit. One of the accelerating factors is demographic change: fewer and fewer young people are joining the labour market. Qualified personnel from abroad can help - at least in part. Although Germany is one of the most popular destinations for international students and doctoral candidates, it is not a permanent home. So how can they be retained in the long term or even permanently?

Better framework conditions and targeted networking

As part of the funding programme, Paderborn University aims to support international students seeking a degree with additional services at the start of their studies, during their studies and during the transition to the job market. Throughout the entire "student life cycle", i.e. the period from application to graduation, experts provide comprehensive assistance. Specifically, this means that they familiarise international students with contact points in the region, connect them with regional stakeholders and provide career guidance services. Together with a wide range of international degree programmes and language courses, the aim is to ensure the best conditions for students to stay in the region for the long term. Both sides benefit from this: More qualified specialists are available to the local labour market and international students have better career opportunities with long-term planning security.

This text has been translated automatically.

Symbolic image (Paderborn University, Besim Mazhiqi)